Mini eggplant pizzas

eggplant pizzas

I adore eggplant and pizza, so what could be better then combining the two? That’s a rhetorical question… because obviously nothing! The great thing about this recipe is that it’s vegetarian and gluten-free, so really it’ll make everyone happy. You can just use the ingredients in your fridge for the topping – spinach, mushroom, capsicum, etc… I personally love the combination of sour cherry tomatoes with salty black olives. Of course cheese is a must; haloumi, goats cheese, mozzarella, cheddar – the options are endless! Let me know what you top your eggplant pizzas with!

Ingredients

  • 1 large eggplant, sliced
  • olive oil, for brushing
  • 1/4 jar passata sauce
  • 1 punnet cherry tomatoes, chopped into quarters
  • 1/2 jar black pitted olives, sliced in halves
  • mozzarella cheese, grated
  • basil, torn

Method

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees. Arrange the sliced eggplants onto a tray and brush with olive oil. Bake for 15-20 minutes.

Remove the baked eggplant from the oven. Spread 1 teaspoon of passata sauce over each eggplant then arrange cherry tomatoes, olives, cheese and basil. Place eggplant back in the oven and cook until cheese has melted. Enjoy hot, hot, hot!!

Happy cooking, love Jem x

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Banana, oat and Greek yoghurt muffins

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Are you craving a sweet but don’t want to undo the run you just struggled on for 30 minutes? This is the muffin recipe for you! These muffins are butter free, flour free, have very little sugar and are beautifully moist! I was searching through my fridge yesterday morning thinking of what to bake, and had a litre of yoghurt, a few bananas which were looking a little brown and got inspired to create something healthy. These muffins are perfect for a morning or afternoon snack, a brekkie on the go and a dessert after dinner.  The chocolate drop when warmed up oozes in to the middle of the muffin and is bloody amazing! Store muffins in an airtight container for up to one week (if they last that long).

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Greek yoghurt
  • 2 large bananas, mashed
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • optional – chocolate drops, to place on top of each muffin

Makes 10-12

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees and prepare a muffin tray with muffin cases.

Add all the ingredients except for the chocolate drops into a large bowl and stir until batter is smooth and creamy.

Pour batter into prepared muffin cases, filling each about 3/4 full. Place a chocolate drop in the middle of each muffin.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins are set. Allow muffins to cool in pan for before removing. Enjoy warmed up with a nice cuppa!

Happy baking, love Jem x

Tom Yum Goong

tom yum

Earlier this year I had an absolutely amazing trip around Asia, and on my last day in Thailand I spent the afternoon at Silom Cooking School in Bangkok. I learnt the art of making traditional Thai dishes, and my favourite dish of the day was Tom Yum Goong – hot and sour prawn soup. This recipe is simple to make and takes no time at all to cook. It is healthy, bloody delicious and you can play around with the ingredients too – for a vegetarian alternative just replace the prawns with mushrooms, or for chicken just add chicken breast and use chicken stock.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of water
  • 2 stalks fresh lemongrass, trim off the very end of the root and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 slices fresh galangal root, smashed
  • 3 fresh kaffir lime leave
  • 1 tbl tamarind paste
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • prawns, shelled and de-veined
  • 12 fresh Thai chili peppers, cut lengthwise into strips
  • 1/2 white onion, sliced
  • 1 can straw mushrooms, drained and rinsed
  • 1 small ripe tomato, cut into wedges
  • 1 small lime, squeezed
  • 2 sprigs fresh cilantro
  • coriander, to garnish

Serves 4

Method

Bring the water to boil over high heat in a medium-sized saucepan. The add the lemon grass, galangal, kaffir lime leaf, fish sauce and tamarind paste.

Add the prawns, bring to a boil and cook for three minutes. Add the onion and mushrooms. Boil for another seven minutes until the prawns are cooked through. Add the chili peppers and tomatoes.

Turn off the heat and then add the lime juice. Garnish with cilatantro, roasted whole chili peppers, coriander and serve hot.

Happy cooking, love Jem x

Banana muffins

banana muffins

Gluten free, sugar free and tastes amazing? Yes it is true, these scrumptious little bites of heaven are in fact healthy and delicious! I personally love banana bread and these muffins come a close second. This winner recipe is short, simple and sweet. There’s nothing I dislike more then reading a “paleo recipe” with about 40 steps and including ingredients you probably haven’t even heard of, well I haven’t heard of anyway… These muffins are a perfect healthy treat for the 5:2 diet, a snack in the old work lunch, or even a little dessert after dinner.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 large bananas
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped finely

Makes 9

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees and prepare a muffin tray.

Place all ingredients in a large bowl and mix until smooth and creamy.

Then pour the batter into prepared tray, filling each about 3/4 full.

Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins are set and a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Allow muffins to cool before removing.

Store in an air-tight container after sneaking a few of course…

Happy baking, love Jem x

Fantastic frittata

frittata

Yes, this dish does actually taste as good as it looks! Frittata is probably one of the most easiest and healthiest dinners to make; and once you figure out your favourite flavour combinations you can add anything. It’s great for a small bite on the go, and you can whip up a meal with whatever is in your fridge. Frittata is packed with protein from the eggs, it’s suitable to eat on the 5:2 diet, and it’s even tastier the next day for lunch! What does your meat-free Monday meal look like? Here’s mine!

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 bag baby spinach
  • 1 bunch asparagus, cooked
  • 5 slices feta cheese, crumbled
  • parsley, a few sprigs torn
  • 8 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • salt & pepper to taste

Serves 4

Method

Preheat oven to 180º. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat and add the onion and garlic. Then add the spinach and cook until wilted.

Spray a round baking dish with cooking oil.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs with milk. Make sure to beat some good air into the eggs so your frittata will come out of the oven light and puffy! Add salt and pepper.

Place the asparagus, feta, onion and spinach evenly in the baking dish then pour over the egg mixture covering the vegetables. Sprinkle parsley on top then pop in the oven.

The frittata will usually take about 40 minutes to cook, but keep on eye on it so it doesn’t burn on top. Enjoy hot with sweet chilli sauce and a roquette salad on the side!

Happy cooking, love Jem x

Vietnamese summer rolls

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Vietnamese has to be my most loved and eaten cuisine – I find the food fresh, with subtle ingredient combinations that marry perfectly. Vietnamese summer rolls can be had for lunch, dinner or even an afternoon snack. They are so simple to make, you can use a variety of different ingredients and they’re so healthy! For me summer rolls ticks every box. This recipe I’ve used chicken, but prawn and tofu go wonderfully too.

Ingredients

  • 60g rice vermicelli or rice noodles
  • 8 rice paper wrappers
  • 2 chicken breast fillets, sliced
  • 1 carrot, julienne chopped
  • 1 cucumber, julienne chopped
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 4 shallot stalks, sliced in half
  • 3 tbl fresh coriander leaves, chopped

Dipping sauce

  • 1/4 cup sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 3 tbl chopped fresh coriander leaves

Serves 4 (2 summer rolls each)

Method

Fry chicken on a medium heat until cooked through and nicely browned on the outside.

Bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil. Boil rice noodles for 3 to 5 minutes, or until al dente, and drain. Rinse thoroughly with cold water so they don’t stick together and put aside in a bowl.

Fill a large shallow bowl with warm water. Dip one rice wrapper into the water for a few seconds to soften. Lay wrapper on a bench and place 2 slices of chicken, a handful of noodles, 2 cucumber sticks, 2 carrot sticks, avocado, half shallot stalk and coriander in a row across the centre, leaving about 5cm of the wrapper uncovered on each side.

Fold in uncovered sides of wrapper, then tightly roll to enclose the filling. Repeat with remaining rolls.

In a small bowl, mix the sweet chilli sauce, lime juice and coriander (you may need to add 1 tbl of water if it becomes too thick).

Serve the rice paper rolls with the dipping sauce.

Happy cooking, love Jem x